Julie Greenwald
Julie Greenwald

Chairman/COO, Atlantic Records Group

(Photo: Robyn Towmey)

A Fantastic Year
"I never take for granted the ability to break new artists," Atlantic Records Group chairman/COO Julie Greenwald says. Still, "2012 was a great year for us. Fun. really exploded and we put them on the map, as well as Ed Sheeran and Grouplove. I'm also super fortunate to work with great established acts like Jason Mraz, Zac Brown Band, Flo Rida and Trey Songz, who all had a fantastic year." Greenwald maintains her status as the highest-ranking woman executive at a U.S. record company, and is No. 1 on Billboard's Women in Music list for the third consecutive year.

My Mentor: Lyor Cohen, former chairman/CEO of recorded music, Warner Music Group. "I had one boss for 20 years who always had my back, gave me the ability to have a voice in the company and to make the decisions of how we sign and market artists. He taught me to always have unwavering belief in your artists. That's how I model myself."

Meanwhile, Atlantic has a year-to-date total album market share of 7%, up from 6.7% in 2011, according to Nielsen SoundScan, thanks to the success of these acts and others. Current total album sales have topped 917,000 for fun., 247,000 for Sheeran, 143,000 for Grouplove, 4.2 million for Mraz, 5.7 million for Zac Brown, 949,000 for Flo Rida and 2.9 million for Songz. Greenwald heads Atlantic Records Group with chairman/CEO Craig Kallman, whom she memorably once described as "the mad scientist in the studio with the artists." The two shared the No. 28 slot on Billboard's Power 100 list published in January, but she gives her colleagues at Atlantic most of the credit for her label's ongoing success. "The great thing about Atlantic is it's not the same company we were in 2011 because we're constantly shifting bodies between departments, because we're thinking about what our artists need, to give them the best opportunity to be seen and heard by the tastemakers. We've constantly evolved, and I love that." Like any major label in today's market Atlantic enjoys the advantages of its size and scale but recognizes the need to operate in a far more nimble fashion-as Greenwald says, to "move like a tightly knit indie responding to what the market is looking for."